At a time the BJP-led Central government is battling the charge of corruption over the Rafale fighter jet deal, Union Coal Minister Piyush Goyal Monday accused the “previous government” of distributing coal blocks to their “favourites” like “revdi”. Addressing a rally at Hardibazaar village in Korba district of Chhattisgarh, the minister said the Narendra Modi government fixed the anomalies in the process of allocating coal blocks after coming to power.
“The previous government had allocated the coal blocks like ‘revdi’ (a type of sweet) to their favourite people. But after Modi government came to power, it brought a transparent mechanism for the allocation that generated revenue to the tune of crores for the government,” said Goyal in an apparent reference to the Congress-led UPA government of the past.
The rally was part of ‘Atal Vikaas Yatra’ campaign of Chief Minister Raman Singh. On the occasion, Goyal, who also holds the charge of Railway ministry, and Singh laid foundation stones of four railway line projects worth Rs 9,952 crore in Chhattisgarh, where assembly polls will be held later this year.
A total of 355.5 km length of railway network will be laid under these projects. These projects will provide better transportation facilities to tribal people living in mineral-rich region of
the state, Goyal said.
Hailing the development works done in Chhattisgarh, the minister said the state has recorded tremendous growth
after Modi government assumed office in 2014.
Under the East-West rail corridor, the foundation stone for Gevra Road-Pendra Road (135.3 km) rail line worth
Rs 4,970 crore was laid. Nine railway stations will be built as part of this project.
Similarly, 63 km-long Dharamjaigarh-Korba rail line will be laid with an investment of Rs 1686 crore, which will
also have six railway stations en route.
Kharsia-Dharamjaigarh (131 km) rail line and Chirmiri (Koria district)-Nagpur Road halt (17 km) were two other
projects for which foundation stones were laid.
The construction of Chirmiri -Nagpur Road halt will ensure trains from Ambikapur to Bilaspur and Durg and Anuppur to Jabalpur to pass thourgh Chirmiri.
The BJP government is fighting the allegations levelled by the Congress of corruption and violation of rules
by Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the Rafale deal with France.
The Congress has also accused the prime minister, the finance minister and the defence minister of “lying on the
issue”. Modi had announced the procurement of 36 Rafale fighters after holding talks with the then French president
Francois Hollande on April 10, 2015, in Paris.
The controversy took a turn last week after Hollande claimed that the Indian government had proposed Reliance
Defence’s name as the offset partner for Dassault Aviation.